Breaking Radio Silence… (and Something New!)

You would not believe the week I have had.  I was planning on taking part in the BBAW festivities, but the work events of this week completely put paid to that.  Probably my previous worst-ever week multiplied by ten.  Gah.

BUT.

I have a KINDLE 3!!!

Yeah, I caved and ordered one a few weeks back.  It was meant to arrive next week, so it landing on my doorstep this morning was a pleasant surprise.

It almost makes up for the week I have had.  Almost. 

Anyway, my first impressions of the Kindle (bear in mind my current ereader is a Sony PRS505 and is one I’ve had since January 2008 and is responsible for turning me into an ebook convert):

  • It’s slim.  Slightly tapered sides, so it looks a lot slimmer than my Sony (just done a side-by-side comparison and the Kindle is actually slimmer).
     
  • I like the colour (graphite, i.e. grey) a lot.  There wasn’t an option to get the white version (maybe that’s a US-only colour), but I think I would have chosen graphite anyway.  It’s also a matt plastic, which makes it prettier IMO.
     
  • It’s light.  I may get a cover for it.  Not sure if I should go for the official Kindle covers they’re selling on Amazon or something else.  Anyone have recs?
     
  • The refresh rate is so much faster than my Sony (which, admittedly, is two generations behind the current model).  But when I flip pages, or type, the refresh rate is pretty amazing.  Or have I just been stuck in the dark ages?
     
  • I said type.  Yes, the mini keyboard.  The Kindle is actually only ever so slightly longer than my Sony (which doesn’t have a keyboard), because the Sony has all the space under the screen for buttons.  I’ve logged on to my home wifi network and had no problems using the keyboard.  But then, I’m used to a Blackberry keyboard as well.
     
  • Good user experience.  Packaging very easy to open and tells you exactly what to do first, i.e. plug it into your PC (or wall outlet) and charge.  I was slightly taken aback when the instructions disappeared after I plugged it into my USB port, before realising that they were actually displayed on the eink screen – I thought they were on a plastic insert over the screen!
     
  • Which brings me to the excellent screen quality.  Very crisp and clear, and I’m sitting in a sunlit room at the moment.  Though I haven’t read a book yet nor done a direct comparison to my Sony, it all looks good. 
     
  • Very intuitive design.  I haven’t had to refer to the user guide for anything (though I did flip through because I’m obsessive like that).  So far, I’ve synced it up to my Amazon Kindle account, downloaded a free book, and connected to my home wifi without having to use the guide.  Though I am fairly techie and obviously have a ereader already.

So there you have it – my immediate thoughts on my oh-so-pretty Kindle. 

I’m slightly worried at the moment, as the Kindle appears to be going through an update and start-up cycle.  For the second time.  In the time it’s taken me to write this post.  If it heads into a third cycle, I may panic.

But I’m very pleased with it.

Now I need some good Kindle blogs – does anyone have any recs?

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13 thoughts on “Breaking Radio Silence… (and Something New!)

  1. Sorry about your work week. I’ve been having crazy frustration lately, but not as bad as that. Is it the weather?! I am not sure.

    I’m a nook user so I’m not up to speed with the Kindle accessories or blogs.

  2. Oooh, a nook. We don’t have them here in the UK, but if we did, I would probably have spent even more time dithering between the various ebook readers out there.

    And yeah, now I’ve to go search out Kindle blogs – such a hardship 😉

  3. I’ve been sighing over the Kindle 3 for a while now, but I haven’t yet managed to convinced the very rational and prudent part of my brain that I should buy it even though my Sony 505 is still perfectly serviceable. Any arguments I could use to sway PrudentBrain?

    Etsy has some very pretty Kindle covers…

  4. Oh, I totally caved in a weak moment. I held out for a while, then Sony announced the new Reader range with the sky-high prices. At which point, I figured the Kindle at £110 was a bargain (though I ended up paying the extra £40 for 3G+wifi version, heh – if you give in, might as well go all the way).

    Right – this is not really going to help, but the Kindle’s screen contrast and refresh rate beats the Sony 505 hands down. I read my first book last night, and yeah, definite improvement.

    BUT – the range of Kindle books on Amazon UK isn’t great at the moment. And if you’re like me, the majority of my ebooks are either in epub or lrf format, so I’m going to have to move them to mobipocket at some point – I haven’t tried doing that yet, so I’ve no idea how easy or painful it will be.

    And Etsy – I completely forgot! I’m going to spend hours there now…

  5. Forgot to mention. Get Calibre – it’s free. And it converts books and syncs them to your device for you! Kindle books are mobipocket based, so any mobi books you have should copy across, but since I started using Calibre I haven’t used another way of doing it.

  6. Sarah from the Smart Bitches did a video comparison of the Kindle 3 and the Sony Touch refresh rates, and there was no difference, so that’s probably due to the next generation you now own ^^.

    Sony also corrected the crispness of the contrast problem for their Touch screen. I don’t think I’ll buy new this year, but I might buy the current generation next year ^^, when the price has gone down.

  7. Lynne – I love your covers, especially the extra pockets idea! I may give it a go when I’ve more time – unfortunately, I don’t have the talent to whip that sort of thing up in a spare hour…

    And I have Calibre, but pretty much used the Sony software to manage the books on my Sony reader. I can see it being very handy in setting up my Kindle library though, thanks for reminder.

    Nath – Oh, it completely made my weekend 😀 And this week (touch wood) has started off well, so yay.

    Estara – LOL I studied that video in-depth. I haven’t seen the new Readers instore yet, but I played with the old Touch quite a lot (managed to resist though) and wasn’t that put off by the contrast, so imagine it must be pretty impressive now! I’m certainly not opposed to returning to Sony at the moment, but we’ll see how I feel after a few months of the Kindle.

  8. Hi Li! This post is perfect timing — I’ve just recently decided that I need to join the e-reader club. I’ve been resistant, because I’m cheap and I’ve always liked the paper book reading experience. But $139 is really reasonable! Plus I just moved to a small town with no decent bookstore, so downloading books from Amazon is a whole lot more attractive than it used to be. Oooh, wanty!

  9. Jennie! Talk about breaking radio silence 😉

    I think Amazon has really cracked it at this price point. Reading-wise, am loving my Kindle – very user-friendly, excellent screen, and hey, I was already an ebook convert.

    I do have slight reservations about the wifi/3G element because I don’t like the idea of anyone being easily able to access my reading device, but I think it’s just technology nowadays, and in theory, all the online bookstores have access to the books I’ve bought anyway. And I like the convenience, the fact I don’t have to hook my reader up to the PC to transfer books.

    The only other drawback I have at the moment is that the range of books on Amazon UK could be better, but probably not a consideration for you.

  10. Pingback: Second Impressions… « Me and My Books

  11. Pingback: 2010: Recap of My Reading Year Part 3 | Me and My Books

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